Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Triple Berry Cobbler

Triple Berry Cobbler
My hubby John loves fruit pie and this is a easy substitute when you need a nice fresh summer dessert but don't feel like rolling out the pie crust!  This is quick and delicious and is super easy too, and it is a perfect sweet treat to end a summer meal.  Summer is the perfect time to make this dessert when the berries are plentiful and ripe for picking! But frozen fruit works with this recipe too!

Fruit Cobbler
4 to 6 Cups fruit (fresh or frozen) (I used 8... the more the better!)
2 Tbs. butter cut in small pieces
2 cups flour
1 Cup Sugar 
4 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. salt
4 Tbs. melted butter
1 cup milk

1 cup sugar
3/4 cup cold water

Directions:  Pre-heat oven to 400 degrees.  Spread fruit in sprayed baking dish and dot with 2 Tbs. butter pieces.  Mix together the flour, 1 cup sugar, baking powder, salt, melted butter, and milk until you have a smooth batter.  Pour batter over fruit in dish and spread to cover. Sprinkle 1 cup of sugar over top of batter in pan, covering batter completely (this makes a nice sugary crust!) Pour 3/4 cup cold water over sugar.  Bake 30 to 40 minutes at 400 degrees until top is browned and fruit is looking bubbly around the edges. Remove from oven and let cool slightly.  This cobbler is wonderful served warm with vanilla ice cream, or frozen yogurt! 

Cook Notes - This dessert is great made with fresh or frozen fruit.  I quite often use a triple berry blend from Costco (blackberries, raspberries, blueberries).  It is delicious just made with raspberries, or blueberries, and I have also made it with peaches too!

Don't judge a book by it's cover... or in this case a dessert by it's picture... it really is delicious!

So sorry that I did not take very good pictures of me making this recipe.  I forgot to take one until I had already put it in the oven and when I took it out it was time to leave to take it to our friends house for dinner so the other pictures where taken with my cell phone when we where enjoying it!  I think everyone liked it because there was only one piece left in the dish when we left!

We enjoyed a delicious dinner with our friends!

I hope if you give this recipe a try you will love it as much as we do. The original recipe was given to my Mom by her neighbor Alyce Cue in 1998 and we have been enjoying it ever since!

Feeling Fruity,

Monday, June 16, 2014

Row, Row, Row Your Boat...

The smile say's it all!
Happy Father's Day!

We are blessed.  John is a great Father, a wonderful husband and a steady provider.  He is a selfless Godly example, and solid steady head of our family.  He is gentle and forgiving and also firm and discerning when needed to be.  He is creative and funny but also an extremely hard worker. He is loyal, caring, and loves deeply. 

Say Cheese!
When we got married, and decided to have a family, neither of us had a clue of how to be good parents, but together we tried to figure it out and muddled our way through.  I know we made a lot of mistakes, but together, I think we raised two pretty darn good kids! 

We make a good team!
Since our kids have gotten older, for special holiday's like Mother's Day, Father's Day, and Birthday's, instead of gifts, we really enjoy to do special things together as a family.  Everyone is busy, so it is really fun to come together and spend some special time together doing something fun.

This Father's Day the kids wanted to pick something that their Dad would really enjoy, so we all went Canoeing at Heavner's.  It was a beautiful day, and we enjoyed a 2 1/2 hour canoe trip down the Huron River. We started at Proud Lake, and ended at group camp in Kennsington Metro Park. On our trip we enjoyed the natural beauty of the river and the nature that surrounds it!  We saw fish, turtles, hawks, birds, herons, cranes, and swans.  We laughed a lot, and had a really nice trip. It was a pretty easy trip and once we got beyond the first little way where there were a lot of canoers and kyakers coming back from self return trips we felt like we had the river to ourselves!

The biggest challenge we had was getting through a small area of the river where the water was fairly deep but we had to cross some large downed trees.  It was really kind of deep and murky to just get out and walk the canoe across so we struggled scootching and pushing ourselves across the logs laying across our way in the river. Big John and I were the first to attempt to cross it and the kids had a lot of fun laughing at our attempts of getting across... but then it was their turn and the tables were turned.  We stopped in the river to just watch them and laugh!  I wouldn't let John go and help them... It was too much fun watching Jessy jump up and down in the middle of the canoe!  And Justin and Johnny telling her to relax, hahaha!  I am super surprised that they didn't tip it :). I am glad to announce we all survived!

Before our day canoeing, we took John to lunch at the Burger Joint in Milford where you can create your burger just the way you like it, and he likes his with lot's of pickles and onions!  We enjoyed a nice lunch at one of their outside tables, and afterwards Johnny took a few "engagement" pictures of Justin and Jessy so they have some to give to Justin's Grandma when they go to visit her next week in California!

Jessy showing off the rock... glad she didn't loose it in the river!

It was a beautiful day and just a great reminder of how special family times like these are!

Happy Father's Day John!

Making memories together,

Saturday, June 14, 2014

And two shall become one...

The future Mr. & Mrs. Justin Hwang
I am feeling very excited today to announce the engagement of our daughter, Miss Jessica Shaw to the very handsome and talented Mr. Justin Hwang!  The love birds announced their betrothal to a crowd of there very happy and excited friends and family last night at a little surprise party that the groom to be arranged after he popped the big question!  Our daughter grinning from ear to ear came into their friends house with a smile as big as the Grand Canyon and flashing a lovely ring that Justin had made for her with his Mother's diamond.  He told her that the ring had 3 stones... one larger one in the center to represent Christ in their relationship, and the two smaller ones on either side to represent them.  I will tell you that my heart was filled with happiness and joy for the young couple.  

The Ring!
My husband and I new this day was coming, because Justin, being a young man of honor, took us to dinner and ask our permission to marry Jessy.  He and Jessy have been friends for about 2 years and have dated for almost a year.  They have a lot of things in common, and they seem to really compliment each other perfectly.  They are both committed to their relationship with God and each other, and with the blessing of their friends and family, they will be married this fall!  Justin is a great guy and he already feels like a member of our family!

When Justin talked to us about getting married, he explained that Jessy had mentioned that she would love a fall wedding, so he wanted to make that happen for her if at all possible (that is seriously sweet.)  It isn't much time for planning a wedding, but we told them if that is what they wanted... that is what we would do, we will GET R' DONE!  So instead of reading books under a shady tree this summer, and sunbathing at the beach, we are going to be planning our daughters wedding, and couldn't be happier! 

Justin and Jessy will be wed on November 2, 2014 at a barn in Milford surrounded by God's creation and the rustic charm of the country.  They want a casual, affair to celebrate their special day surrounded by people that love and care for them.  We feel that God has a great plan for the two of them and feel blessed to welcome Justin into our family.  We are not loosing a daughter but gaining another son! 

If I am going to be the MOB, "Mother of the Bride," I guess I really need to get on the stick and loose those few pounds that snuck up on me this winter.  It will be a busy summer... but one filled with love!

Feeling Blessed!
The MOB :)

Tuesday, June 10, 2014

Fairy Garden...

Fairy's, Gnomes, and Elves are enchanting little creatures that folklore and magical tales have been woven around for centuries. Often the backdrop for these magical stories of these tiny mythical sprites are in mystical woodlands or magical gardens. For years these tales have captured the imaginations of children and adults a like!

In early spring, I had a post with creative projects that I would like to do in my garden this summer and I will use it as an inspiration board.  I love summer flowers, and I usually plant a lot of pots and planters around my deck, porch and yard.  On my "To Do" list this year I decided I wanted to make a magical fairy garden in my somewhere in my yard.  Pinterest is filled with great ideas for these gardens, and since it is pretty popular, you can find all the cute little elements that you need to create one of your very own at Amazon, Joann Fabrics, and Michael's.  Along with with some plants and flowers from the farmers market, it turned my old whiskey barrel pot into a place were stories are made! 

Don't you think it would be a wonderful place to bring grand kids, to sit and sip some cool lemonade while weaving a magical tale of fairy's and gnomes on a long hot summer afternoon! For kid's and kids at heart, it is definitely a fun summer project!

Let your imagination soar!

Thursday, June 5, 2014

Garage Sale!

One man's junk is another treasure... at least that's what some say, and I would say that statement is fairly accurate!  

Our housewares department

I have not been posting much lately on the BSO because I have been so busy.  Between working a few days a week subbing as a Para for Walled Lake Schools, taking my Dad to his doctor's appointments, and getting ready for a really big garage sale, there has been very little crafting, cooking, or traveling of any kind in my house!  For the last month I have been digging, and sorting through stuff in my house and really doing a major purge, and this past weekend we pulled it all out in the garage and driveway and sold all the treasure we found at a garage sale.

Always try to display stuff nicely, make sure it is clean, and use table cloths

We even had fine china, and Waterford crystal at our sale!
I am not going to lie, a garage sale is a ton of work, but sometimes the payoffs are huge!  I learned a lot about garage sales from Mom Mom and her neighbors, because every year they would get together and have a big sale.  There were usually 5 or 6 families involved so they came up with a pretty good system of marking things to identify each persons sales.  We tag our items with different colored tags, so if there are a lot of different people involved in the sale it is easy to identify who's item it is.  We remove the colored tags from each item at the time of purchase tally up the grand total for the customer and take their payment, and then put all the tags from the sale in a coffee can. At the end of each day we tally each persons colored tags up for their total sales for the day and put the tags and money in a zip loc bag.  At the end of each day of the sale we do the same thing.  

Hanging a ladder to put hanging clothes was my hubby's brilliant idea!
We also advertise in the small local paper, and on craigslist and other various garage sale search sites on line that are free.  My online ads that are free, I usually list a lot of the best items, or items that I know collectors would want and will drive people to your sale, it is free so make it as big as you want! The more detailed the ad is the better... and be sure to give good directions with a map if possible to your house!  We happen to live in a pretty big subdivision and my house sits right in the middle with lots of streets and turns to get to us, so we go crazy with signs pointing people to our sale. 

Make sure to straighten and re-fold items during the day to keep things tidy and more inviting to customers!
The best day of a sale we have found to be Thursday, that is when all the really serious garage salers are out to get the best deals, Friday is usually less busy, and then you will get a small wave of shoppers on Saturday about mid morning.  I am usually ready for it to be over by 1 on Saturday so that is when we usually close up shop.  
Our fine art department ;)
We do have one hard and fast rule about the left over things from the sale and that is what comes out of the house for a garage sale, does not come back in house, so the leftovers get loaded in the car, and donated to a local charity. 

Electronics, games and movies were grouped together on a table
It is always more fun to do a sale with friends, or neighbors and the more people involved the more good stuff you have to sell, the more customers you will get.  My friend Sue and her family brought some things over to sell too, and we had fun visiting and chatting with friends, neighbors and shoppers and making a little money in the process.... Well in fact, we made a ton of money. Between her stuff, my stuff, and my kids stuff, we made over $700!  I would say that was pretty good for just junk sitting around our basements and closets!  

We still have this adorable Hello Kitty TV if you know any little girls that need one!
John and I would like to move in a few years, and he was thrilled. We have been in our house for over 20 years now, and we are ready for a change.  It is where we raised our family, made many memories, and collected a lot of treasures :).  We not only got rid of a lot of stuff at the sale but we probably threw out twice as many things while we were getting ready for it.  We are not quite ready to move, but when we do, it will be a lot easier! 

Utilize every inch of space... I even used one of my outdoor plant shelves to display things!
Whether you are thinking about moving, just need to clear the clutter, or need a little extra cash, a garage sale is a fun easy way to get it done! 

Wheelin' and Dealin',